Wednesday, May 11, 2011

CAT Race Cancelled. Possibilities for 2012.

Today the organizing committee for the inaugural Cannonsville Adventure Triathlon decided to cancel the event for this year. Low registrations with only three weeks left to hit minimum targets, and large financial and time commitments, that needed to be made in the next few days, were the main reasons for the cancellation. The CAT Race was planned to be an adventure type triathlon featuring run and bike legs, with the swim replaced by a paddle.

The Cannonsville Adventure Triathlon organizing committee wants to thank the numerous volunteer efforts from the staff of the Delaware County Chamber of Commerce, Delaware County Economic Development, the town and village of Hancock, local and state highway departments, the Delaware County Sheriff’s office and Emergency Management Service, New York State troopers, the Hancock Chamber of Commerce, Hancock Partners, as well as the New York City Department of Environmental Protection and the Catskill Watershed Corporation.

"It is unfortunate that all the parties involved with the first inaugural Cannonsville Adventure Triathlon had to make a decision to cancel the event for lack of participation. I believe the overall economic condition in our region at this time have made possible participants very cautious when it comes to spending their entertainment dollars." stated Jim Eisel, Chairman of the Board of Supervisors of Delaware County.

Glenn Nealis, Director of Economic Development for Delaware County, sees promise in a future reincarnation of the CAT Race. “Our goal is to promote this access to the Cannonsville Reservoir and the recreational opportunities in Delaware County. We will take another look at what type of race we can hold here that will highlight those assets and be easy for racers to participate in. What that will look like for 2012 will be decided over the coming months – be it a true triathlon, biathlon, paddle only event or adventure race with different components.”

“The cooperation between all these organizations must be applauded.” stated Mary Beth Silano, Executive Director of the Delaware County Chamber of Commerce. “Everyone was incredibly professional, accessible, and thorough in putting together their portion of the event. While we are all disappointed we could not start it this year, we are eager to put what we learned to work for a great event next year.”

In 2009, the DEP launched a three-year pilot program to expand recreational boating opportunities at Cannonsville Reservoir, which meant that kayaks, canoes, rowboats and small sailboats were allowed on the reservoir. The Cannonsville Reservoir features nine boat launch sites that ring the shoreline, all outfitted with parking areas and port-a-johns. During the first year, 185 permit holders requested 407 boat tags. Last year, about 160 permit holders requested 344 boat tags. (Each tag is valid for one week with the requirement that the boat be kept on reservoir grounds.) All person in the boats using the Cannonsville waters must acquire an Access Permit from DEP. Permits are free and easy to obtain online at DEP boating access rules require that the canoes and kayaks be steam cleaned prior to going out on the water. There is a fee for the boat cleaning.

The reservoir is open for recreational boating from Memorial Day weekend through Columbus Day weekend, from dawn until dusk. The waters, while flat, do have currents and good winds, providing a great boating or sailing experience. Bald eagles nest along the eastern portion of the reservoir and can often be seen scouting the waters for fish. A free map with rules and regulations for boating on Cannonsville Reservoir is available by calling 866-775-4425, emailing, or stopping by the Delaware County Chamber office at 5 ½ Main Street in Delhi.

To stay informed of future plans for the race, participants should bookmark the race blog at

For more information, please contact Mary Beth Silano at

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The CAT Race is cancelled.

We are sorry to announce, but the organizing committee for the inaugural Cannonsville Adventure Triathlon has decided to cancel the event due to low registration numbers.

We will be posting a joint press release here shortly to explain the reasons and future possibilities. Thank you for your interest.

If you would like to stay posted about this race for the future, please send an email to and we will put you on a list for future news.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Teamwork: Making the CAT a Fun First Race

When we created the CAT Race, we envisioned it as a great team event that would allow racers to participate on a more recreational level. There are amazing folks who do these adventure races who have the ability to load not only a bicycle on their car but a kayak or canoe as well (we want to see a photo of that!!). But it's a lot easier if one person drives here with their bike and other with their boat and they race as a team.

Teams can be 2, 3 or 4 people (2 person canoe leg).

Make it a great weekend to get the team together and hang out in Hancock. Have some great warm up rides or paddles on Saturday and a great dinner in town Saturday night. Choose from a local campground, motel, cabin rental or B&B for your stay. Remember your NYC DEP access permit lasts for 3 years so this could be your inaugural trip to the western Catskills and the first of many as you'll want to return again and again!!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Winners Purses Announced for CAT Race

Woo Hoo!! Purses for top finishers have been announced for the CAT Race. Fastest finishing male, female and team will each receive $500. This should make for quite a competitive race!

There will be more classes of racers and the bragging rights that go along with winning your class. Besides gender divisions (male, female and team), classes will be set by type of boat (regular or pro), and then age groups (in ten year increments). If there are not enough racers in a category they will be combined with the nearest class.

All racers will receive a beautiful bluestone medallion comemmorating the race, a complimentary Inaugural Race T-shirt as well as a meal voucher and drink ticket (beer or non-alcoholic beverage) for after the race.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Why Steam Clean My Boat?

We know it seems like a burden. Why do I have to show up a day early and have my boat steam cleaned? Welcome to the Watershed!

The responsibility for providing clean drinking water to millions of people every day is a task the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYC DEP) takes seriously. The Cannonsville Reservoir alone holds 96 billion gallons of water and covers miles and miles of shoreline. It is part of one of the largest unfiltered water systems, being used by 9 million consumers. Up to 800 million gallons of water are allowed to be taken out of the Delaware System each day - just imagine if that had to be cleaned because an invasive species or two got a foothold in the waters or shoreline.

Invasive species such as Zebra/Quagga Mussels, Japanese Knotweed, or Rock Snot are known to all public water system managers. A nonindigenous species is one that "threatens the diversity or abundance of native species or the ecological stability of infested waters, or commercial, agricultural, aquacultural, or recreational activities dependent upon such waters" says the NYState DEC website.

We appreciate that all you racers will have to jump through this hoop, but hope the lure of racing around the Cannonsville and hospitality of the folks in Hancock will make it all worthwhile. The Google map for the race course also shows the locations of the boat cleaning businesses. We highly recommend and oh so strongly urge you to make an appointment at one to ensure your boat is cleaned by Saturday evening and dropped off at the transition area. Folks who register later will likely have to get a boat cleaning appointment earlier in the day on Saturday or possibly even on Friday. The entire process of cleaning a boat takes about 20 minutes.

Allowing for recreation on their reservoir is one way the City pays it back to the local communities and business and greatly appreciated by them. Additional recreation is allowed on designated City lands such as hiking and hunting.

While these regulations exist, the lands around the reservoirs are kept in pristine condition and that is no exaggeration. The DEP has their own police force that patrols them. Likewise the lands that filter the water and moves it to the creeks and streams that flow into the reservoirs are equally protected. Farms work with the City to manage livestock and runoff, which keep the farms in good working condition and attractive to drive by. While the topography of the mountains will keep development at bay, the regulations add to that by having strict guidelines for development. Large projects can happen but with higher standards for roads, runoff, spectic, impervious surfaces. The City also buys land outright or purchases development rights from landowners,keeping even more land undeveloped and open space protected. When you talk about how green an event is, it really doesn't get any greener than this!!

The Western Catskills do have a different look about them in the Watershed lands. It is uncrowded and beautiful. A paradise for those that like four seasons of weather and being out in Mother Nature's playground. We hope that once you've been here for the CAT Race you'll come back again and again!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Campgrounds Near CAT Race

The Cannonsville Area has the most camping and RV facilities in the western Catskills area due to it's proximity to the East Branch of the Delaware River and great fishing along it's banks. It is also where the West Branch meets up and other well known tributaries such as the Beaverkill and Willowemoc. The Delaware River starts just below Hancock - which is the start of the Upper Delaware Scenic Byway.

You can also camp on New York State DEC lands. Please familiarize yourself with rules for backcountry camping on state lands by going to the DEC website linked here.

The Great Western Catskills website has a listing of all lodging in the county broken out by type of lodging and price range. We're showcasing some local campgrounds that have websites we could link to for our intrepid racers.

Guestward Ho Family Campgrounds
Guestward Ho Family Campground offers lakeside and lakeview campsites for all types of campers. Nestled atop the highest point in Deposit, New York, our sites offer outstanding panoramic lake views. Our wooded sites are situated on 50 acres, presenting your family the perfect setting for a true camping experience!
6214 Decker Road • Deposit, NY 13754
P: 607-467-3246

Peaceful Valley Campsite
Select a sunny or shaded area in one of our three island, river front, or mainland campsites. With over 500 acres, there is a special spot for everyone!
486 Banker Road • Shinhopple, NY 13755
P: 607-363-2211

Oxbow Campsites
Oxbow Campsites is located along the East Branch of the Deleware River and is only minutes from Roscoe N.Y. also known as "Trout Town U.S.A." We have two playgrounds safely located away from any main roads, a ball field, a recreation hall full of video games and pin ball games, a Volley Ball net and much more to keep everyone occupied.
3026 County Route 30 • East Branch, NY 13756
P: 607-363-7141

Russell Brook Campsites
One of New Yorks most naturally beautiful campsites. Situated in a secluded valley, high in the catskill mountains. Surrounded by 18,000 acres of forest preserve and country streams. Secluded tent sites, RV sites, cabin rentals. Most sites waterfront.
731 Russell Brook Road • Cooks Falls/Roscoe, NY 12776
P: 607-498-5416

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Register HERE for the CAT Race

Registration is OPEN and participants are signing up. We are only taking registration for the race online.

Step One:
Get your NYC DEP Access Permit HERE (it's online and free). Early registration ensures closer proximity to the waters edge for your boat.

Step Two:
Register at IMAthlete HERE.

Step Three:
Make your appointment for boat cleaning early and get the best time for your schedule.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Kayak and Canoe Rentals in the Cannonsville Area

The calls are already starting to come in and interest in the inaugural Cannonsville Adventure Triathlon (the CAT Race) is building. Some folks have their sneakers and can run a decent 10k. They have their road bike and 12 miles is within their ability to ride at a decent clip. They can paddle the four miles, but they don't have a canoe or kayak as they usually rent (or they have a canvas bottom boat and don't want to put it through the steam cleaning process). They're not planning on winning so they don't need a super fast boat. Sooooooooo.... what do they do?

Why rent one of course! Here are a list of outfitters in the area, listed in order of closest proximity to Hancock:

Border Water Outfitters, 140 East Front Street Hancock 607-637-4296

Catskill Outfitters 7 North Street Walton 607-865-8827

Al's Sport Store, 6964 River Road Downsville 607-363-7740

Tall Pines Campgrounds, 2715 County Route 35 Bainbridge 607-563-8271

Area rentals may run out fast so make sure to reserve so you get the type of boat you want in the area you want. Also confirm if they will provide racks or padding for your car so you can transport the boat yourself.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

USA Triathlon Sanctioned Race

Race organizers for the CAT Race are happy that the USA Triathlon has sanctioned this inaugural race. The USAT mission is to encourage, support and enhance the multisport experience in the United States. Delaware County event organizers are hoping to tap into the 130,000 members of USAT to generate interest as well as provide confidence in racers from the local area.

Mark Hughes, Owner of Fast Finishes, who is providing the timing support for the race, is looking forward to a challenging day for racers. “We're very happy that this is a USA Triathlon sanctioned race. Sanctioning sets a high standard for the event. It will be a fair event raced under the rules of the sport. Drafting is not allowed on the bike, as per triathlon rules. It's a fast, competitive course. The run is flat and fast and the reservoir is smooth and ready for some fast paddling. The bike has some hills and will challenge you all the way to the finish.”

The Paddle Leg / Transition Area - Things To Know

Participant classes have also been broken down by boat classes. Boat classes have been broken down into a simple system based on the overall length of the boat. This classification system is to make the paddle leg as fair and as simple for everyone. It in no way speaks to the complexity of paddle craft and the nuances in hull design but it offers some fairness in that world of complexity.

Due to the size of our launch area, the number of boats and the sensitivity of the waters edge at the reservoir we will have volunteers to assist, if needed and or wanted, for carrying, launching and landing boats. Please keep in mind we have limited resources and volunteers may NOT be available at your time of entry into the paddle area. This may include a short wait for help if help is needed and or wanted. Your times will not be adjusted for any wait in the paddle area and any protests will be denied due to a wait in the paddle area.

Helpful Hints for paddle leg:
Lighter, skinnier and longer kayaks/canoes are faster.
Shorter, wider and heavier boats are slower.
First Come first served means first registered racers will get better spots in the paddle transition area. Register early.
Practice your paddling. Be familiar with your boat, with proper stroke technique and self rescues.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Racers / Boat Classes

The NYC DEP has minimum boat length requirements. All kayaks must be at least 9'6" in length and all canoes be at least 11'6" in length.

For race results, boats will be broken down into classes as follows:

K1/C1 = overall boat length under 15 feet
K1/C1 Pro = overall boat length over 15 feet

Team K1/C1 = overall boat length under 15 feet, more than one racer, single paddler
Team K1/C1 Pro = overall boat length over 15 feet, more than one racer, single paddler

Team Tandem K2/C2 = overall boat length under 17 feet, teams using tandem boats, two paddlers
Team Tandem K2/C2 Pro = overall boat length over 17 feet, teams using tandem boats, two paddlers

Two Things You MUST Do Differently For This Race

We are so pleased that the New York City Department of Environmental Protection has allowed us to host this event on the Cannonsville Reservoir. It is a unique experience for paddlers and boaters and one we hope you enjoy.

But there are TWO important things you must do that are a little different from what you may usually experience when registering for, and participating in our race. Please read through carefully.

FIRST: You must obtain an access permit from the NYC DEP to be on the reservoir. This is an access permit for your person, so if you have a team entry, each person on your team must have their own access permit. Your access permit will have a number on it. You MUST have this number before you start the registration process on The good news is that it is FREE and EASY to get online. Just follow this link.

SECOND: You must have your boat steam cleaned before race day. This process ensures that no invasive species or slimy things attached to your boat from elsewhere will release themselves in the pristine waters of the Cannonsville. There are five authorized boat cleansing stations around the reservoir. All boats must be cleaned prior to race day and stored at the transition area at the Patterson Boat Launch. NYC DEP will patrol the launch sites and our local police and retired police will be stationed at the launch area all day and overnight. The cleansing is FREE for racers. A tag will be affixed to your boat that will authorized it to be on the reservoir. You should call the cleansing station of your choice and make an appointment for the Friday or Saturday before the race. As there will be 300 boats being cleaning over these two days and the process takes about 20 minutes per boat, having an appointment and sticking to that appointment will be an extremely important planning element for racers and your sole responsibility. Cleansing stations are listed on the attached PDF as well as on the Google Race Map. They will be open for extended hours to accommodate racers.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

CAT Race Area Lodging, dining, things to do

Here's a Google Map with local lodging from motels to B&B's to campgrounds; dining from full service restaurants to pizza and fast food, and things to do from antiquing to golf.

View Cannonsville Reservoir Area Map in a larger map

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Google Map of Race Course

Hi Folks
Here's a link to the race map, updated as of March 9, 2011.  We've shortened the paddle leg so the race will be a 10k run, 4 mile paddle and 12 mile bike. Piece of Cake!!!!! Boat Cleaning Stations included on this map.

View Cannonsville Adventure Triathlon (CAT Race) in a larger map

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Welcome to the First Annual CAT race

We're working hard to prepare an amazing race along and on the Cannonsville Reservoir and hope you join in. Our Cannonsville Adventure Triathlon will feature a 6.3 mile run, followed by a 7-8 mile paddle (we're still working on that leg), finishing with a 12 mile bike ride. There will be individual and team registrations.  The event will be held Sunday, June 5th, with a pre-race meeting at 8am in Deposit. The race will start at 10am at the west end of the reservoir by the Roods Creek landing. The boating leg will start and end at the Patterson landing. The finish will be in front of the Hancock House Hotel and will be followed by festivities and an awards ceremony.

As you may know, the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYC DEP) has opened up the Cannonsville Reservoir to recreational boating (canoe, kayak, and sailboat) for the last two years under a three year Pilot Boating Program. Boats are required to be steam cleaned and permitted (permits last no longer than a week). The Catskill Watershed Corporation paid for the boat cleaning, and provided funds for an independent consultant study, porta-johns, and other program expenses during the first two years. Going forward in 2011, boaters will be required to pay for their own boat cleaning. There are 5 area boat cleaning businesses that wrap the reservoir from Downsville to Deposit, to Walton and then Sidney Center. There were 9 launch sites that were created - all outfitted with parking areas and port-a-johns. Last year over 400 people took advantage of this amazing outdoor resource.  The waters, while flat, do have currents and provide a great boating experience.  Bald eagles nest along the eastern portion of the reservoir and can often be seen scouting the waters for fish.  Eagle nesting areas (eastern most part) are off limits to paddlers during the nesting season (ends Sept 1st).

This race will be a coordinated effort between Delaware County, the town and village of Hancock, local and state highway departments, local law enforcement offices, NYC DEP, CWC, Delaware County Chamber of Commerce and the Hancock and Deposit chambers. Funding for this first race is being provided by the Catskill Watershed Corporation.  For more information please contact Mary Beth Silano at